I imagine Stephen Harper is kicking himself right now. The tactic he has used for the last two elections, a smear campaign against the Liberal leader, has backfired. Allow me to rephrase that: the tactic he has used unsuccessfully for the last two elections, the tactic which has twice failed to fetch him his coveted majority, has backfired. Why he would use a failed tactic not only twice but three times is beyond me. It shows a lack of imagination, a marriage to failure. He thought the tactic would work, must work, and kept using it despite the fact that it didn't work previously.
this time the tactic not only did not work as he hoped, it backfired. Harper attacked Ignatieff hoping that he could shake voters loose from the Liberal Party, assuming the voters would automatically convert to the Conservative Party. However, as I have noted before, Harper, while attacking Ignatieff, never told the voters why they should vote for him. There is, however, a third party leader who has been giving voters a reason to vote for him. Harper has shaken voters loose from the Liberals, but instead of going over to him, they have gone to the NDP and Jack Layton. And, according to the polls, Layton will at the very least deny Harper a majority government for the third time.
What a dilemma. I have said I would never vote for Harper for his degradation of Canadian political discourse. I could never vote for Layton. I don't want Ignatieff in office either. At least, after this election, it very likely that both Ignatieff and Harper will resign from politics. I can only hope their replacements will be real leaders, real statesmen.